How to get rid of mosquitoes at night: 5 tips for a bite-free summer

5 tips for keeping mosquitos out of your bedroom, including essential oils and blackout blinds

A woman sitting on her bed and spraying it with essential oils
(Image credit: Karolina Grabowska / Pexels)

As we enter the summer months, there are many things to look forward to like warmer weather and longer days. However, summer also means mosquitoes are at an all time high – why can’t we ever just have nice things?!

While mosquitoes love the hot weather and humidity of summertime, they tend to avoid direct sunlight. Instead, they come out at night to feed so you’re more likely to get bitten while you’re asleep, making your bedroom the main area for potential mosquito attacks.

The main reason why mosquitoes bite you is because they’re attracted to things that your body releases through sweat, like ammonia, lactic and uric acid. So, whether you exercised before settling down on your best mattress or you’re a naturally sweaty sleeper, mosquitoes will seek you out more frequently than others, plus when you’re asleep, you’re less of a threat!

As someone who often gets bitten by mosquitoes, I wanted to find out how to avoid them this summer, so I spoke to Martin Seeley at Mattress Next Day who explained the five best ways to get rid of mosquitoes at night for a bite-free sleep. 

1. Control the lighting in your room

While mosquitoes tend to avoid direct sunlight, a lot of their species use light to locate ‘hosts’ a.k.a people to bite. To stop mosquitoes searching you out while you sleep, try to block out as much light as possible in your bedroom. Seeley comments that “mosquitoes are most active during dawn and dusk, so make sure your room is as dark as possible during these times. If you do need a light on, use a dim, yellow-coloured bulb, as the bugs will be less attracted to it.”

2. Remove stagnant water from your bedside table

Most people take a glass of water to bed with them, but this is actually one of the worst things you can do during mosquito season! As Seeley explains, “mosquitoes love to breed around standing water, as in any water that isn’t running”, so things like water jugs, indoor plants and damp patches can massively attract mosquitoes. To avoid this, try to make sure you’re watering your plants properly so there aren’t any pools of water around them, and opt for a water bottle with a lid rather than an open glass.

A glass of water sitting on a windowsil

(Image credit: Cup of People / Pexels)

3. Use lemon or lavender essential oils

As mosquitoes are attracted to sweat, “the best way to prevent being bitten at night is to prevent them from smelling your body odour and repel them with a smell they hate,” says Seeley. Mosquitoes and other bugs hate strong citrus and floral smells like lemon and lavender as it overloads their olfactory organs in the same way that bug spray does. Seeley recommends during mosquito season to invest in an oil diffuser to emit these scents to get rid of bugs. If you don’t have a diffuser, you can rub a few drops of essential oils on your skin, like around your ankles to prevent being bitten.

4. Turn on your fan

To avoid mosquitoes, it’s important to focus on the air circulation in your bedroom… but it’s a bit tricky to do this. Firstly, if you keep your window open to ease the heat, mosquitoes are more likely to get into your room, along with pollen and other allergens. But getting some air into your room can help get rid of mosquitoes as they “aren’t very good fliers and struggle with even a gentle breeze,” says Seeley.

Whisper Flex Smart Fan

(Image credit: Duux)

Rather than encourage more mosquitoes into your room by keeping the window open, turn to your best fan. While it isn’t recommended to sleep with a fan on at night, you can avoid issues like muscle stiffness and pain by choosing a slow and gentle setting and pointing it away from you. Not only will the airflow make it difficult for them to fly but “it’ll disperse the carbon dioxide you breathe out, which is another factor that attracts them to you.”

5. Wear long sleeves or put repellent on exposed skin

To keep your skin protected from bites while you sleep, choose pyjamas or other sleepwear with long sleeves to cover yourself up. If you prefer to sleep in more lightweight clothing, use an insect repellent on your exposed skin to mask your scent from mosquitoes and put them off biting you.

Bethan Girdler-Maslen
Home Editor

Beth is Home Editor for T3, looking after style, living and wellness. From the comfiest mattresses to what strange things you can cook in an air fryer, Beth covers sleep, yoga, smart home, coffee machines, grooming tools, fragrances, gardening and much more. If it's something that goes in your house, chances are Beth knows about it and has the latest reviews and recommendations! She's also in the know about the latest deals and discount codes from top brands and retailers.

Having always been passionate about writing, she’s written for websites, newspapers and magazines on a variety of topics, from jewellery and culture, to food and telecoms. You can find her work across numerous sites, including Wedding Ideas Magazine, Health & Wellbeing, The Bristol Post, Fashion & Style Directory, TechRadar, CreativeBloq and more. In her spare time, Beth enjoys running, reading, baking and attempting craft projects that will probably end in disaster!